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Inflation rises further to 7.61 per cent

Our Bureau

New Delhi , Aug. 13

THE annual wholesale price index-based inflation rate touched a three-and-a-half year high of 7.61 per cent for the week ended July 31, mainly due to a surge in the prices of fruits and vegetables, edible oil and some manufactured products, according to the data released by the Centre here on Friday.

The latest inflation figure released on Friday does not include the impact of the fuel price hikes resorted to by the oil companies on July 31 as the hike was effective only from midnight, i.e. August 1.

For the week ended July 31, the index was up by 0.2 per cent to 186.6 due to higher prices of primary articles and manufactured products. The primary articles index was up by 0.4 per cent to 191.7 during the week as prices of food items went up by 0.4 per cent, while non-food items were costlier by 0.2 per cent. The fuel, power, light and lubricants (FPLL) index stood firm at 274.4. The index for manufactured products rose by 0.2 per cent to 165.2 from 164.9, on rise in prices of food products, tobacco, paper, chemicals, metals, machinery and transport equipment.

The food article group index rose to 186.7 as prices rose for tea, maize, bajra (3 per cent each), urad and fish-inland (2 per cent each), wheat, gram, masur, moong, fruits and vegetables (one per cent each). However, ragi was cheaper by 2 per cent. The non-food articles group index was also higher at 195.3 due to costlier fodder (7 per cent), nigerseed (3 per cent), rape and mustard seed (2 per cent) cottonseed, raw cotton, raw tobacco and gingelly seed (one per cent each). However, prices fell for raw rubber (7 per cent), sunflower (4 per cent), raw silk (2 per cent) and castorseed (one per cent).

The group index for food products rose by 0.4 per cent to 174.5 due to costlier processed tea (11 per cent), solvent extracted groundnut oil, rice bran oil (7 per cent each), gur (3 per cent) imported edible oil, groundnut oil (2 per cent each), biscuits, baby foods, sugar and coconut oil (one per cent each).

Prices of skimmed milk dipped by 3 per cent, while cottonseed oil was cheaper by one per cent. The group index for beverages tobacco and tobacco products rose by 0.5 per cent to 213.6 due to surge in prices of potable country liquor by 12 per cent and Indian made foreign spirit by one per cent. Paper and paper products group index rose by 0.2 per cent to 174.6 due to 2 per cent rise in prices of all kinds of boards.

The group index for chemicals and chemicals products was up by 0.1 per cent to 179 due to costlier synthetic resins (4 per cent), synthetic rubber and liquid chlorine (3 per cent each), acid and caustic soda (one per cent each), although PVC resins was cheaper by 2 per cent.

The non-metallic mineral product group index rose by 0.3 per cent to 154.9 due to rise in prices of building bricks (5 per cent) and bottles (4 per cent). Base metals alloys and metal products group index was up by 0.1 per cent to 205.3 owing to higher prices of bolts and nuts and ordinary casting (2 per cent each) and aluminium ingots (one per cent).

Machinery and machine tools group index increased to 0.1 per cent to 135.4 due to surge in prices of pumps (10 per cent), black and white TV sets and complete tractors (2 per cent each).

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